The Moffat County High School varsity cross-country team’s individual results from Wednesday’s 4A Region 5 cross-country meet in Delta:
(Name — place — time)
• Alfredo Lebron — 1 — 15:47.65
• Rene Molina — 8 — 16:59.2
• Dale Nakai — 13 — 17:18.26
• Miguel Molina — 14 — 17:21.04
• Wyatt Villa — 32 — 18:04.69
• Taft Cleverly — 51 — 18:34.6
• Matt Hulstine — 65 — 19:13.84
• Derek Maiolo — 83 — 20:18.25
• Terran Jensen — 90 — 22:20.29
• Eryn Leonard — 10 — 19:57.72
• Katharine Keiss — 22 — 20:47.98
• Kelly Ciesco — 24 — 21:01.22
• Savannah Williams — 25 — 21:02.7
• Aubrey Campbell — 26 — 21:05.01
• Brenna Ciesco — 30 — 21:11.91
• Sassy Murray — 38 — 21:36.38
• Bailey Hellander — 39 — 21:38.05
• Delaney Baker — 46 — 21:56.97
4A state qualifying teams from Wednesday’s 4A Region 5 cross-country meet in Delta:
(School — points)
Moffat County — 68
Durango — 84
Glenwood Springs — 99
Eagle Valley — 142
Battle Mountain — 43
Durango — 53
Moffat County — 107
Delta — 130
Senior Alfredo Lebron’s goal was to win a state title in his final season as a Moffat County High School cross-country runner.
After Wednesday’s 4A Region 5 cross-country meet, Lebron has yet to lose to a 4A opponent, winning the regional meet in 15 minutes and 47.65 seconds.
“It feels pretty dang good,” Lebron said after the race. “I was more nervous heading into the regional race than I have been all season, but I got out and did what I had to do.”
Lebron’s success also helped his team, as the MCHS boys cross-country team won the regional meet for a third year in a row behind four top-15 finishes.
Senior Rene Molina finished eighth and fellow seniors Dale Nakai and Miguel Molina took 13th and 14th, respectively.
While the girls couldn’t repeat as regional champions, they did well enough to finish third and join the boys as a team at the 4A state meet Oct. 29 in Aurora.
“Winning three in a row is cool because we are able to contribute to our school and earn a regional title,” Lebron said. “We made a plan at the beginning of the season to get each and every runner to do their all so we could win a third title in a row.”
For the first mile of the boys race, Lebron said it was pretty congested, but about 400 meters later is where he broke away.
“I planned to stay with the pack until about the 2-mile marker, but when I saw (coach Todd) Trapp just past the mile, he asked what I was doing, so I took off,” he said. “You want to use the other people to judge from the beginning, but you can’t sit back the entire race. When people started falling off, that is when I felt the need to move up.”
Junior Eryn Leonard has been the front-runner for the girls team all year and Wednesday was no different.
Leonard finished 10th with a time of 19 minutes and 57.72 seconds.
“I felt I ran a very good race,” Leonard said. “I worked all year to get to this point and I thought I would finish a little higher, but I know I gave it my all and it feels pretty good to be going back to state.”
Coming into the season, Trapp said the goal was for both teams to make it back to the state meet.
While Lebron and Leonard’s finishes helped their respective teams, Trapp said it was the next group of runners who really pushed the teams up the leader boards.
The top five runners from each team earned points for the team standings.
Senior Katharine Keiss took 22nd for the girls while fellow senior Kelly Ciesco, junior Savannah Williams and freshman Aubrey Campbell finished 24th, 25th and 26th, respectively.
Senior Wyatt Villa was the fifth place finisher for the boys, finishing 32nd.
“Katharine was our No. 2 runner and she really had a good race and helped lead our pack of girls,” Trapp said. “Aubrey moved up and had a really good race as well and has really improved in the last couple of weeks.
“For the boys, we had Miguel who doesn’t race a ton finish in the top 15 and Wyatt finishing really strong.”
The top 15 boys and girls runners advanced, so while Leonard would have qualified for state on her own, she said having her teammates there with her is helpful.
“I am going to have girls there who are going through the same thing as me when getting ready for the race,” she said. “They have to face the same extreme pressure, so just having them there helps a lot.”
As both teams face one last week of practice before the state meet, Lebron said he still has his main goal to accomplish — win state.
“From the beginning of the season, I have wanted to have an undefeated season,” he said. “I think anything but a state title would be a disappointment because I am predicted to win and because I really want to win it.
“If I can win it for Moffat County, it would be something great.”
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